After a six-year wait, John McGraw finally got his New York Giants back to the World Series in 1911 and they caused a bit of a baseball fashion buzz when they took the field against the Philadelphia Athletics. Their new uniforms were decidedly non-traditional; black jerseys with an “NY” on the sleeve and black pants. They must have felt invincible with the great Christy Mathewson on their side but it wasn’t to be.
The RMY Auctions Photo of the Day shows Matty warming up before Game 4 of the Series at Shibe Park. The original 5×7 photo was taken by the great Paul Thompson and remains in excellent condition. It’s one of only a few known images of Matty wearing the unique uniform that would be donned by the Giants only during those October afternoons over 105 years ago.
Mathewson had won the first game of the series, then lost Game 3. Rain then descended on the eastern part of the country, causing a week-long delay before Game 4. It seemed like a blessing for the Giants, who were able to send their ace out for a third time. Once again, though, he was beaten, giving up three runs in the fourth inning as Philadelphia’s own stalwart, Chief Bender settled in to dispatch the visitors.
Mathewson pitched 27 innings in the series, going 1-2 but with an ERA of just 2.00. The A’s captured the title in six games, thanks to the big bat of Frank Baker, who hit a pair of long balls and was christened “Home Run Baker” by writers, a nickname that stuck for good.
The photo is one of more than 1,000 images in RMY’s March Premier Auction currently underway.